Online Help


1. The ChanneLIS Database

2. Explore the Thesaurus

3. Search for a bibliographic record

4. Search by geographical area

5. Search by taxonomy

6. Simple search

7. Multi-criteria advanced search

8. Search results


ChanneLIS Database

ChanneLIS provides access to bibliographical records held in the library of the Marine Biological Association or at the Station de Biologique de Roscoff. The database provides an indexing service but not direct access to the documents themselves. The Roscoff library indexes the grey literature and books, not journal articles. The MBA library has mainly indexed articles and extracts from books.


Exploring the thesaurus

exporing the thesaurus
The thesaurus exploration tool (left-hand column / "Browse" section / thesaurus link) indicates the different fields covered by the database as well as the number of records atteched to each field/sub-field.

The fields involving scientific texts are varied, including the biology of algae, aquaculture, pollution, fisheries, marine physics, etc.

Information :
Records cannot be directly viewed through the thesaurus.
To access the content of a bibliographic record
«Search for a bibliographic record».




Figure 1
Exploration of the thesaurus tree structure
The thesaurus has three levels.
For example, the POLLUTION field has
CHEMICAL POLLUTION as a sub-field,
which is then sub-divided into


Search for a bibliographic record

search for a bibliographic record



Four broad searches can be run in the ChanneLIS database: (Figure 2):

  • a search by geographic area («Browse» section / «geographical info» link)
  • a search by taxonomy («Browse» section / «taxonomy» link))
  • a simple search
  • an advanced search


Information : Currently, not all of the records have yet been linked to a geographic area or taxonomy. The most complete search results are obtained using the advanced search.



Figure 2
In the left-hand column, a block offers the choice between different types of search.


Search by geographic area


The geographic search (left-
hand column / «geographical info» link
) accesses all of the records related to either area of the Channel or to a particular site (Figure 3).

In Figure 3 the numbers listed
opposite each geographic area correspond to the number of bibliographic records associated with the area.

Figure 3
Search by geographic area or by site
7 key areas: :
Normano-Breton Gulf
Seine Bay
Eastern Channel
Isle of Wight
12 specific sites identified by red points :
Isles of Scilly
Land’s End
Start Point
Cap of the Hague
Cap Gris-Nez
Leathercote Point
Hover the mouse over a name in the table (Plymouth in the example above) and the corresponding area on the map is highlighted (in green).


Search by taxonomy

The taxonomy link (left-hand column / «Taxonomy» section) searches for records linked to a taxon.

Figure 4
20 records are currently linked to Annelida

By clicking on the figure for the number of related entries, the user can access a list of records that refer to the taxon (figure 5).

From this list, the user can view the content of a record by clicking on the record number on the line of the corresponding table

→ Search results Résultats d’une recherche
Species are classed using the WoRMS (World Register of Marine Species) database. A link to this database provides additional information on the species.


figure 5



Figure 5
Table with the first 15 results
from the 20 records linked
to the Annelida taxonomic group


Simple search




Simple search is allowed in the box the search block (Figure 6). It is carried out using the following criteria :

  • name of the author (correct diacritic marks are required)
  • key words
  • site
  • a word in the title
  • geographic area
  • taxon
  • a word from the thesaurus




Figure 6
The box in the search block in the left-
hand column enables search by key words,
author name, geographical area, etc.


Multi-criteria advanced search

This type of search offers the option of combining a number of criteria (Figure 7)

  • a word in the title
  • type of record
    (book, article, thesis, etc..)
  • library (MBA or Station biologique de Roscoff),
  • year of publication

Information on the formats of words entered

Title words can be entered in both upper case and lower case letters.
For author names: enter the first three letters, a drop down will offer the choice among a list of authors.

«add seach criteria»

The user can add these criteria using the «add search criteria» button (Figure 7) :

  • geographic area(s) (or GIS)
  • term(s) from the thesaurus
  • authors
  • taxa
  • etc.

Figure 7
Home page of the advanced search

Information in particular, the addition of a GIS (geographic area) and/or thesaurus criteria further optimises the search results.


Exemples of searches with thesaurus and GIS criteria:


Exemple 1


  • Type of document : reports
  • Database : Marine Biological Association
  • Word from the thesaurus : domain : human activities; sub-domain; environnemental impact


exemple 2


  • Database: Marine Biological Association
  • Word from the thesaurus : Ecology
  • Geographic area : Plymouth



When the added criteria has been selected, you must click on the "Add" button to validate your choice.


Résultats d’une recherche



Figure 8
Table of the results of a search From the table of results, the user can access a detailed information page on the record by clicking on the notice number (Figure 9).



Figure 9
Detailed view of a bibliographic record

To download the PDF, click here